Young interested real estate investor out of Pittsburg, Pa

9 Replies

Hello BP members, my name is Ben Ward I am currently a 22 year old senior college student out of Pittsburgh who has found great interest in real estate. I began to take an interest when I worked for a small residential construction company. One of the jobs I worked on was actually a house that my boss and a partner bought and flipped. At the time I knew nothing about real estate investing. Once I began college I started to research it and learn what it was all about. That's when I came across BP and all the helpful resources they offer. I am currently reading their book "How to Invest in Real Estate" which is really helping me to understand the many different ways to invest and to raise money. Its also teaching me some of the lingo in the industry. I was hoping I could get some advice on what I could do going forward to become as well prepared as I can be before I graduate this summer. I would like to make deals as soon as I graduate but the lack of money and student debt is defiantly what would hold me back. My plan would be to purchase a duplex house and live in part of it while I fix it up and renting the other half out once renovations are complete. I have been considering attending local REIA meetings but have yet to do so. If anyone has any advice I would greatly appreciate it.

@Benjamin Ward

Hey ben, I personally started out with my first property doing a house hack. If you can find a 2-4 unit property that would allow you to use an FHA loan, thats the fastest (cheapest) way to get started.

I suggest you look for something close to rent ready considering the cost of major renovations will slow you down or totally stop you.

After that making connections and growing some capital will be the next move in my opinon.

Keep saving and keep learning! Good luck!

@Benjamin Ward I was in your shoes when I was in school. Caught the real estate bug about halfway through then educated myself as much as I could on real estate the last 2 years before graduating and bought my first house hack the summer after I graduated. I've been doing a house hack a year since then. Best way to start building a portfolio in my opinion. Gives you time to fix them up/stabilize/raise rents while you're there then you can move onto the next one and keep racking up cash flowing assets during your 20's. I would just focus on educating yourself as much as you can until you graduate and also keeping tabs on the market. Check out what houses are selling for in different neighborhoods so you can get a feel on what is a good deal. Figuring out what market rents are for the different neighborhoods is important to know as well. Most all banks will also count a portion of the rents of the occupied units if you buy a 2-4 unit towards your DTI so that can help offset the student loan debt in your DTI to hopefully enable you to qualify for a mortgage once you graduate.

@Benjamin Ward Welcome to BP, this is such a great community to be a part of to connect with like minded investors. You really are taking the right first step!

I am 23 and out of school and would say the best way to get started in real estate is to just get started. Education is perfect, but I have had stumbling blocks in my own journey, because I disproportionately focused on education versus doing. We all get into that rut, it's just about how quick you get out of it.

I think a house hack is a great way to get started too along @Jeremy Taggart commentary! 

Most importantly, network with people and find someone that you think you might want to emulate and provide value to them! Turn decades into days by giving your energy and passion to helping someone else. Real estate is an amazing industry and if you focus on being a "go-giver" from the jump, you will be along your journey faster than you would think!

@Zach Snyder I appreciate you answering. I have heard of an FHA loan and roughly understand how it works. Are there any negatives to using a loan of this type? Have you ever used an FHA loan and if so did it workout for you?
@Jeremy Taggart thanks for your input. I was wondering if you could tell me more about how banks will use a portion of the rents to offset my student loans?
@Clayton Hepler Thanks man it's awesome to talk to someone in the same kind of situation as myself. How did you begin to make connections with people. I think this is one area I have struggled to figure out. I don't know where to start. I've considered attending one of the Pittsburgh REIA meetings to make possible connections but other than that I don't know where to look to find these people. If you have any pointers I'd appreciate it.

Originally posted by @Zach Snyder :

@Benjamin Ward

Hey ben, I personally started out with my first property doing a house hack. If you can find a 2-4 unit property that would allow you to use an FHA loan, thats the fastest (cheapest) way to get started.

I suggest you look for something close to rent ready considering the cost of major renovations will slow you down or totally stop you.

After that making connections and growing some capital will be the next move in my opinon.

Keep saving and keep learning! Good luck!

@Zach Snyder I appreciate you answering. I have heard of an FHA loan and roughly understand how it works. Are there any negatives to using a loan of this type? Have you ever used an FHA loan and if so did it workout for you?

Originally posted by @Jeremy Taggart :

@Benjamin Ward I was in your shoes when I was in school. Caught the real estate bug about halfway through then educated myself as much as I could on real estate the last 2 years before graduating and bought my first house hack the summer after I graduated. I've been doing a house hack a year since then. Best way to start building a portfolio in my opinion. Gives you time to fix them up/stabilize/raise rents while you're there then you can move onto the next one and keep racking up cash flowing assets during your 20's. I would just focus on educating yourself as much as you can until you graduate and also keeping tabs on the market. Check out what houses are selling for in different neighborhoods so you can get a feel on what is a good deal. Figuring out what market rents are for the different neighborhoods is important to know as well. Most all banks will also count a portion of the rents of the occupied units if you buy a 2-4 unit towards your DTI so that can help offset the student loan debt in your DTI to hopefully enable you to qualify for a mortgage once you graduate.

@Jeremy Taggart thanks for your input. I was wondering if you could tell me more about how banks will use a portion of the rents to offset my student loans?

 

Originally posted by @Clayton Hepler :

@Benjamin Ward Welcome to BP, this is such a great community to be a part of to connect with like minded investors. You really are taking the right first step!

I am 23 and out of school and would say the best way to get started in real estate is to just get started. Education is perfect, but I have had stumbling blocks in my own journey, because I disproportionately focused on education versus doing. We all get into that rut, it's just about how quick you get out of it.

I think a house hack is a great way to get started too along @Jeremy Taggart commentary! 

Most importantly, network with people and find someone that you think you might want to emulate and provide value to them! Turn decades into days by giving your energy and passion to helping someone else. Real estate is an amazing industry and if you focus on being a "go-giver" from the jump, you will be along your journey faster than you would think!

@Clayton Hepler Thanks man it's awesome to talk to someone in the same kind of situation as myself. How did you begin to make connections with people. I think this is one area I have struggled to figure out. I don't know where to start. I've considered attending one of the Pittsburgh REIA meetings to make possible connections but other than that I don't know where to look to find these people. If you have any pointers I'd appreciate it.

 

@Benjamin Ward i have used an fha, it was my first property and a duplex I house hacked. In my opinion the only real downsides are that the property has to be in reasonably good condition and pass certain inspection. Also it will me prinary mortgage insurance, however this isnt a big deal as long as you consider it when running number on a property. All in all its a great and cheaper way to get started! Also notr that it can be ised on 1 - 4 unit homes, but you must live ok n it for atleast a year!

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